SMAC calendar published Feb. 15, 2023

Southwest Minnesota Arts Council events in the next month


The Southwest Minnesota Arts Council serves 18 counties as a source of funds and technical assistance to enable local organizations, educational institutions and individuals to sponsor and/or create and promote arts in their communities. The office and gallery are at 509 West Main Street in Marshall. They are open 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. weekdays. Workshops and grant-writing webinars are free of charge, but advance registration is required. Call 800-622-5284, email, or see the website at Below are the grant deadlines for the 2022-23 fiscal year. The office will be closed Feb. 20.

Open office support: second Tuesday of the month, between 10 a.m.and 2 p.m., in-person, for assistance with any grant-related questions. Or schedule an appointment with the grants administrator.

Virtual grant Q&A: get your questions answered about our grant programs from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., March 9, via Zoom. Pre-registration required.

Webinars: All grants have a grant-writing webinar which is listed with each grant below. Each will be recorded and is available on the website.

Art Legacy Project Grants

Receiving Art Legacy Project Grants of up to $20,000 in matching funds to stimulate and encourage the creation, performance and appreciation of the arts through large-scale projects that will leave an arts legacy in Southwest Minnesota recently were:


City of Madison, $19,430, to add a mural to its new park on main street called Grand Park. Grand Park includes outdoor musical instruments, outdoor exercise equipment, adult and child-sized bikes to use, seating areas and landscaping with trees, boulders, pollinators, prairie plants and sod. The sidewalk winds through the park connecting everything. The proposed mural design by Jacqui Rosenbush reflects the intergenerational theme of the space with its whimsical nature, and also takes the viewer down a winding river path across the span of the wall. Members of the community will be invited to help paint the panels for the mural.

Department of Public Transformation, Granite Falls, $20,000, for its "Art of Neighboring" event series, including 16 community arts events held from May 2023 through April 2024. These events will provide residents with opportunities to learn from other cultures; explore diverse points of view; dabble in new creative skills; experience high-quality arts, culture, and storytelling; and connect with each other. Activities will take place at The YES! House in Granite Falls and other locations around the Granite Falls area as needed.

Art Project grants

Receiving Art Project grants of up to $7,000, to stimulate and encourage the creation, performance and appreciation of the arts recently were:

City of Sunburg, $6,835, to support its community fiddling project and provide better instruction for community fiddlers who are new to the craft, and support developing guitar and piano accompaniment skills. Funds will go towards paying instructors and tuners, music repair and music supplies. Workshops for fiddlers will be arranged for group performances during Syttende Mai in May, a Christmas Fiddle program with workshops preceding the program and other performances/rehearsals.

Willmar Area Symphonic Orchestra, $4,150, to support multiple concerts and the videotaping of the concerts for presentations at area care centers free of charge. The orchestra will present an abbreviated free concert of “The River” for area fourth-grade students, with the full version on March 19. The second major concert will be the Young Artists Concert on May 21 and will feature a talented young artist from its Young Artist Competition.

Grant panelists needed

The SMAC Board of Directors continually seeks panels of artists, arts administrators, arts volunteers, and arts appreciators representing multiple artistic disciplines from throughout the SMAC
geographic region and from all communities — including BIPOC, people with disabilities and LGBTQIA2S+ individuals — to be a grant panelist. It is a positive way to strengthen your grantwriting skills by understanding the process as a whole. It's also a great way to learn and support what exciting projects are happening in rural southwest Minnesota. Panelists are compensated $75 for a panel. Complete details and application are available on the website.

Monthly grants

The monthly grants for arts organizations for the 2022-23 fiscal year are first-come, first-served with deadlines the first of each month August through May. Earliest start date will be the first of the following month.

Quick support for organizations: Provides up to $2,500 for activities such as planning for an Art Legacy Project, strategic planning or board training, costs to apply for 501(c)(3) status, small equipment purchases, or small arts projects.


Quick support for artists: Provides up to $1,000 for activities such as purchasing supplies, attending classes, and small artist-led community projects.

Artist equity grants: Up to $4,000 to aid Black, Indigenous, and other artists of color at any career stage with projects that will advance their skills and artistic career.

Grants for artists

Grant deadlines for the 2022-23 fiscal year for individual artist grants. Grant-writing webinars require advance registration.

Art Study Opportunity for Youth Grants: Up to $500 in funding for students in grades 5-12 for an enrichment camp or specialty study. Standard weekly lessons are allowed only for those students who qualify for the federal free or reduced lunch program. Deadline March 29, earliest start date May 1.

Grants for Arts Organizations

Grant deadlines and webinar dates for the 2022-23 fiscal year. No cash match required this fiscal year. Deadlines and grant-writing webinars vary. Webinars are free; participants must register to be able to join the meeting.

Art Project grants: Up to $7,000 in funding, to stimulate and encourage the creation, performance and appreciation of the arts. Round 3 deadline March 22, earliest start date May 1.

Prairie Disciple Award

The Prairie Disciple $1,000 award provides awareness and recognition of one individual from the 18-county area of southwestern Minnesota served by SMAC, whose activities and involvement have substantially contributed to the arts over an extended period of time. The accomplishments of arts advocates working in the region are often not widely known or appreciated. In recognizing these individuals publicly, the awards will raise the profile of the arts in their community and throughout the SMAC region. Nominations require letters of recognition from community members and peers. Nominations are due by April 15 and must be made online on the SMAC website,

Donna Middleton started working at the West Central Tribune in 1975 and has been the news assistant since 1992. She compiles the arts, health, farm and community page calendars, as well as rewrites and works on the special sections.
She can be contacted at or phone 320-214-4341.
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